Police officers share breast cancer awareness

HARLINGEN — The beginning of October brings more than fall leaves and pumpkin patches. It is an opportunity to pay homage to breast cancer survivors, which is why the Harlingen Police Department decided to do a tribute.

For the first time ever in the department, officers and staff members are sporting a pink patch on their uniforms and will wear these throughout the entire month.

According to Joe Gonzalez, District Representative and Public Information Officer, the idea came from Police Chief Michael Kester earlier in the year.

“There was a couple of patch ideas that came through for different awareness months, one of them being breast cancer awareness, and we chose the pink for October. When they were made, they were given out to district representative units and executive staff, as well as individual officers who requested them,” Gonzalez said.

The majority of the staff is wearing them, Gonzalez said, adding the chief had introduced the idea and everyone went with it.

“You will find the majority of people wearing them on Fridays,” he said.

Since the department announced on their social media accounts they are supporting the cause, Gonzalez said residents have provided positive feedback.

“I have seen a lot of positive reactions on Facebook. We are letting people know we are raising awareness and for all forms of cancer,” Gonzalez said.

This is the first disease the department is raising awareness for through patches, but the plan is to continue doing the same for other diseases.

“There have been talks about doing an autism patch. We have talked about that as well. It is just a matter of getting our designs down and when we can order them,” he said.

“The community has shown great support toward the police department, and we want the community to know we support them and all endeavors and issues. We have members of our family and friends who have been impacted by cancer one way or shape and we want to let them know they have our support,” Gonzalez said.

ecavazos@valleystar.com